Judaism and Health: A Handbook of Practical, Professional and Scholarly Resources


The first state-of-the-art, comprehensive resource to encompass the wide breadth of the rapidly growing field of Judaism and health.

"For Jews, religion and medicine (and science) are not inherently in conflict, even within the Torah-observant community, but rather can be friendly partners in the pursuit of wholesome ends, such as truth, healing and the advancement of humankind."
—from the Introduction

This authoritative volume—part professional handbook, part scholarly ...

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Judaism and Health: A Handbook of Practical, Professional and Scholarly Resources

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The first state-of-the-art, comprehensive resource to encompass the wide breadth of the rapidly growing field of Judaism and health.

"For Jews, religion and medicine (and science) are not inherently in conflict, even within the Torah-observant community, but rather can be friendly partners in the pursuit of wholesome ends, such as truth, healing and the advancement of humankind."
—from the Introduction

This authoritative volume—part professional handbook, part scholarly resource and part source of practical information for laypeople—melds the seemingly disparate elements of Judaism and health into a truly multidisciplinary collective, enhancing the work within each area and creating new possibilities for synergy across disciplines. It is ideal for medical and healthcare providers, rabbis, educators, academic scholars, healthcare researchers and caregivers, congregational leaders and laypeople with an interest in the most recent and most exciting developments in this new, important field.

Rabbi Rachel Adler, PhD • Rabbi Richard Address, DMin • Ronald M. Andiman, MD • Barbara Breitman, DMin • Rabbi Anne Brener, LCSW • Shelly Thomas Christensen, MA • Rabbi William Cutter, PhD • Rabbi Stephanie Dickstein, LMSW • Rabbi Nancy Epstein, MPH, MAHL • Elizabeth Feldman, MD • Rabbi Naomi Kalish, BCC • Rabbi Lynne F. Landsberg • Jeff Levin, PhD, MPH • Judith Margolis, MFA • Adina Newberg, PhD • Kenneth I. Pargament, PhD • David Pelcovitz, PhD • Steven Pirutinsky, MS • Michele F. Prince, LCSW, MAJCS • Rabbi Stephen B. Roberts, MBA, BCC • David H. Rosmarin, PhD • Fred Rosner, MD, MACP • Rabbi Julie Schwartz • Devora Greer Shabtai • Rabbi Mychal B. Springer • Rabbi Shira Stern, DMin, BCC • Rabbi David A. Teutsch, PhD • Rabbi Abraham J. Twerski, MD • Rabbi Simkha Y. Weintraub, LCSW • Rabbi Nancy Wiener, DMin

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Reveals why healing without spirituality is a contradiction in terms.... Will inform anyone who cares about humane, compassionate healthcare, regardless of their religious affiliation.... I wish this volume had been available when I was a young physician."
Larry Dossey, MD, author, One Mind: Why Our Mind Is Part of a Greater Consciousness and Why It Matters; executive editor, Explore: The Journal of Science and Healing

"Assembles wise teachers and professionals to muster the ancient wisdom of a resilient people on behalf of greater vitality and robust life."
Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson, DHL, author, God of Becoming and Relationship: The Dynamic Nature of Process Theology and Passing Life's Tests: Spiritual Reflections on the Trial of Abraham, the Binding of Isaac

“Fabulous—a very impressive collection, and a real contribution to the field.”
Rabbi Dayle Friedman, MSW, MAJCS, BCC, founder, Hiddur: The Center for Aging and Judaism; founding director of chaplaincy services, Philadelphia Geriatric Center; author, Jewish Visions for Aging: A Professional Guide for Fostering Wholeness

“As it is in life, it is in print too: Judaism and health are a proper and fitting pair.... Judaism informs health so that we all may live better.”
Rabbi Kerry M. Olitzky, coeditor, Jewish Men Pray: Words of Yearning, Praise, Petition, Gratitude and Wonder from Traditional and Contemporary Sources; author, Jewish Paths toward Healing and Wholeness: A Personal Guide to Dealing with Suffering

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781580237147
  • Publisher: Jewish Lights Publishing
  • Publication date: 10/1/2013
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 500
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Rabbi Elliott N. Dorff, PhD, is the author of many important books, including The Way Into Tikkun Olam (Repairing the World), a finalist for the National Jewish Book Award, and The Jewish Approach to Repairing the World (Tikkun Olam): A Brief Introduction for Christians. An active voice in contemporary interfaith dialogue, he is Rector and Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at the American Jewish University (formerly the University of Judaism), and chair of the Academy of Judaic, Christian and Muslim Studies.

Rabbi Elliot N. Dorff, PhD, is available to speak on the following topics:

• Jewish Medical Ethics

• Conservative Judaism

• Jewish and American Law

• Finding God in Prayer

• A Jewish Approach to Poverty

Jeff Levin, PhD, MPH, holds a distinguished chair at Baylor University, where he is University Professor of Epidemiology and Population Health, and director of the Program on Religion and Population Health at the Institute for Studies of Religion. He also serves as adjunct professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Duke University School of Medicine.

Michele F. Prince, LCSW, MAJCS, is executive director of OUR HOUSE Grief Support Center in Los Angeles. She is a steering committee member and former director of the Kalsman Institute on Judaism and Health of Hebrew Union College. She is an oncology social worker affiliated with the Keck Medical Center of the University of Southern California.

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Table of Contents

Rabbi Elliot N. Dorff, PhD xi
Acknowledgments xv
Introduction: Judaism and Health
Jeff Levin, PhD, MPH, and Michele F. Prince, LCSW, MAJCS xix

Part I
Judaism, Medicine, and Healing

History of Jews in Medicine and Healthcare
Fred Rosner, MD, MACP 1
At the Bedside in the Babylonian Talmud: Reflections on Classical Rabbinic Healers and Their Approaches to Helping the Suffering
Rabbi Simkha Y. Weintraub, LCSW 8
An Overview of Jewish Bioethics
Rabbi David A. Teutsch, PhD 20
Words Worth Healing
Rabbi William Cutter, PhD, and Ronald M. Andiman, MD 38
Spiritual Resources for Jewish Healthcare Professionals
Elizabeth Feldman, MD 54

Part II
Jewish Pastoral Care and Caregiving

Jewish Healthcare Chaplaincy: Professionalizing Spiritual Caregiving
Rabbi Naomi Kalish, BCC 69
Jewish Pastoral Care
Rabbi Mychal B. Springer 81
Pastoral Care in a Postmodern World: Promoting Spiritual Health across the Life Cycle
Rabbi Nancy Wiener, DMin, and Barbara Breitman, DMin 93
Seminary-Based Jewish Pastoral Education
Rabbi Nancy Wiener, DMin, Rabbi Julie Schwartz, and Michele F. Prince, LCSW, MAJCS 108
Judaism and Caregiving
Rabbi Stephanie Dickstein, LMSW 128
The Jewish Professional as Personal Caregiver
Rabbi Stephen B. Roberts, MBA, BCC 141

Part III
Jewish Approaches to Coping with Challenge

Tradition, Texts, and Our Search for Meaning
Rabbi Richard Address, DMin 157
Bad Things Happen: On Suffering
Rabbi Rachel Adler, PhD 169
Judaism and Disability: R'fuat Hanefesh—The Healing of Our Souls, Individual and Communal
Rabbi Lynne F. Landsberg and Shelly Thomas Christensen, MA 174
Judaism and Resiliency
Rabbi Shira Stern, DMin, BCC 190
Doing Kaddish to Turn Mourning into Dancing
Rabbi Anne Brener, LCSW 205
Creativity and Healing in a Jewish Context
Judith Margolis 219

Part IV
Judaism, Psychology, and Health

Judaism and Addiction
Rabbi Abraham J. Twerski, MD 239
Gratitude: Perspectives from Positive Psychology and Judaism
David Pelcovitz, PhD 251
Jewish Religious Coping and Trust in God: A Review of the Empirical Literature
David H. Rosmarin, PhD, Devora Greer Shabtai, Steven Pirutinsky, MS, and Kenneth I. Pargament, PhD 265
Population Research on Judaism, Health, and Well-Being
Jeff Levin, PhD, MPH 282

Part V
Jewish Communal, Organizational, and Policy Perspectives

A Program Assessment of the Field of Judaism and Health: Program Review and Key Stakeholder Interviews
Michele F. Prince, LCSW, MAJCS 301
Three Jewish Lenses for Work and Health
Rabbi Nancy Epstein, MPH, MAHL, and Adina Newberg, PhD 323
Jewish Ethical Themes That Should Inform the National Healthcare Discussion: A Prolegomenon
Jeff Levin, PhD, MPH 336

Notes 352
Suggested Reading 398
Credits 399
Index 400

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